2004 Welsh Regional Championships
4BR casts it eye over the runners and rider of the Welsh Regional
Championships, which takes place over the weekend of 13th/14th March.
Brangwyn Hall, Swansea
Saturday 13th March
Sections: 1, 2, 3
Sunday 14th March
Sections: Championship, 4
There is a real sense that something is happening with Welsh banding
at present, although it seems to be happening primarily in the Championship
For the first time ever, four bands from the Principality will
compete at the National Finals in the Albert Hall in October, after
both Tredegar and BAYV Cory booked automatic qualification places
on the strength of their 2nd and 3rd places respectively on “Enigma
Variations”. With two other places up for grabs, the Top Section
contest come Sunday 14th will be one to savour.
Elsewhere though, things don’t look quite as rosy. The decision
to drop the “Champion Band of Wales” title from the
series of three local contests in South Wales means the future of
contesting in the Principality away from Swansea could be in terminal
decline, as there is now very little for the bands even at the lowest
levels to actually play for. That may also account for the pretty
poor showing at the Lower Section National Finals in Dundee, where
the Welsh could only come away with two 6th places for the efforts
of the eight travellers.
There is a feeling that there is a need for a regarding in the
lower sections if those results are not to be repeated at Harrogate
again this year, although this would possibly cause problems as
only the Fourth section has a proper contesting “quorum”.
There is some good news though, as there are at least three new
bands at the contest this year, which boosts the numbers competing
up to 56 this year.
Alan Gibbs and his excellent team will be pleased with that, but
if there is to be a real renaissance in the Welsh Banding, then
it should come from the bottom up, and not as it appears at the
moment, from the top down.
Number of competing bands: